Book Review: ‘The Hidden Language of Baseball’ by Paul Dickson

*Written in 2014.

The Hidden Language of Baseball is an interesting little book for true fans of the sport. It goes through the history of signs and sign stealing in baseball, giving insight as to where it started and how it evolved over generations.

Paul Dickson has a talent for keeping things pretty concise and straightforward while still being thoroughly entertaining and informative. In fact, this isn’t a long book by any means, as it comes in at around 160 pages or so, not counting the appendices and extra parts at the end. However, just recently reading Baseball Between the Numbers by Baseball Prospectus and The New Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract, any book would seem short by comparison. Regardless, for a book that isn’t very lengthy, this one covers a lot.

For the true aficionado, this book is a gem. Being that it adds insight to the culture of baseball beyond just simply observing the game, makes it an intriguing and entertaining book. Sorry, I’m just a baseball junkie and I love stuff like this, as it opens up the game and gives a glimpse behind the scenes.

The Hidden Language of Baseball isn’t just a book of baseball sign language though. It is also a book full of great stories about the great men who played and managed the game in every era. It is a great little treatise on one of the most important factors in the game.

Rating: 7.5/10
Pairs well with: The Baseball Codes by Jason Turbow and Michael Duca

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